Valley Metro and City of Phoenix Renew Financial Program for Light Rail Extension

PHOENIX — The City of Phoenix and Valley Metro have agreed to renew the Small Business Financial Relief Program through 2024, a project for businesses impacted by light rail expansion in the Valley.

In the SBFAP’s first year, it awarded more than $360,000 to 62 companies affected by the construction of the light rail, according to a press release.

“The additional income offered by these grants can make a huge difference in the lives of employers and employees of local businesses while the light rail is being built,” Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego said in the news release.

“What started as a pilot program has been so successful that it will continue until 2024.”

As we approach the second year of the program, they encourage anyone who meets both requirements to apply.

First, a company’s annual revenue must not exceed $750,000, compared to $500,000 previously.

Second, the company must have been in operation before construction of the light rail began, versus a year before construction before, according to the press release.

“With two years of construction, I would like to make sure that we support our small businesses that are impacted by the development of light rail,” said Yassamin Ansari, board member from Phoenix.

“From technical assistance to rent relief, these grants will allow businesses to build the cash reserve needed for a slower summer in Phoenix. I encourage all companies that have not taken advantage of this opportunity to apply.

Businesses located near the construction of a light rail can apply for up to $9,000 in assistance.

Transport 2050 was a 35-year transport plan adopted in 2015 that will see improvements to the bus system, expansion of light rail and major street improvements.

Over the 35 years, the funds are expected to generate about $16.7 billion in sales taxes, more than half of the plan’s overall cost, the statement said.

See all grant eligibility requirements on their website.

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Ryan H. Bowman